Another Quora question. Lots of post inspiration over there. Here’s my answer:
I’m 58 years old. That means that in 1974 I was 12. I vividly remember Watergate, and Nixon’s resignation. I also remember Jimmy Carter’s “American Malaise” period. I think Jimmy Carter is a nice man who was a lousy President. I turned 18 in 1980. I cast my first vote for President for Ronald Reagan. I watched as he, Margaret Thatcher, and Pope John Paul II rapidly accelerated the downfall of the Soviet Union. It was literally inspiring.
Then George H.W. Bush won the office. He was not Ronald Reagan. He was Establishment Northeastern Country Club Republican. When he ran for reelection I voted for Perot in that one. Perot tried to warn us, and he was right.
Bill Clinton became President. Honestly, Bill (except for being a rapist) wasn’t that bad as President, but his wife gave me the heebie-jeebies. Dead people, cattle futures, sexual abuse, etc. etc. etc. and everything rolled off the pair of them like they were Scotchguarded.
It was about this time that I figured out that the Democrats were no longer “The Loyal Opposition,” they were The Other Side™ and they were out to WIN, no holds barred. And they cared not a whit about what the law said, they just had to find an accommodating judge. The Constitution? P’shaw, merely an outdated guidline. Appoint enough Judges to the Federal courts and especially the Supreme Court and you can make the law mean whatever you want. “Social Justice,” you see. Which is the opposite of actual justice.
Then Bush v. Gore cemented that for me. I watched the press conference where, as I noted at the time:
With the continuing legal maneuvers in the Florida election debacle, I have been forced to a conclusion that I may have been unconsciously fending off. The Democratic party thinks we’re stupid. Not “amiable uncle Joe” stupid, but DANGEROUSLY stupid.
And they don’t think that just Republicans and independents are stupid, no no! They think ANYBODY not in the Democratic power elite is, by definition, a drooling idiot. A muttering moron. Pinheads barely capable of dressing ourselves.
Take, for example, the position under which the Gore election machine petitioned for a recount – that only supporters of the Democratic candidate for President lacked the skills necessary to vote properly, and that through a manual recount those erroneously marked ballots could be “properly” counted in Mr. Gore’s favor. They did this in open court and on national television, and with a straight face.
So, it is with some regret that I can no longer hold that uncomfortable conclusion at bay:
They’re right. We are.
And I started seriously wondering how we got to that point.
I could go into vast (and hyperlinked) detail here, but I’ll instead just use one word:
I’m not really a Conservative. Steven Den Beste (PBUH) said it best, and I’m in complete agreement with him. So I invite you to read his explanation. But I’m not a Progressive.